Taylor Lautner’s stock is already soaring have just co-starred in the insanely profitable The Twilight Saga: New Moon. The latest investor is said to be Paramount who is looking to make the young actor the next big action star.
According to Nikki Finke at Deadline Hollywood, Paramount has sealed a deal with Lautner for him to star in perviously announced Max Steel based on the Mattel toy property.
Max Steel is a 19-year-old extreme sports junkie who is involved in a nasty accident that leads to an infection giving him superhuman abilities. He is then signed up by a secret agency and becomes a superhero fighting the forces of evil.
Paramount’s hope is that Max Steel, which is more popular internationally than in the US, is another big toy property-turned-film like Transformers and GI Joe before it. The expectation is for a huge 8-figure budget and top tier popcorn action sequences.
For Lautner, Max Steel is a perfect fit coming off the Twilight films where he has made a name for himself with a mostly female fanbase. Going action star will increase his payday and put him in front of a new male audience to extend his appeal. Paramount, meanwhile, will hope to draw a cross-gender audience to Max Steel similarly to how Robert Downey Jr. helped draw females to Iron Man and beef up its bottom line.
Paramount continues to move forward on a reboot of the Jack Ryan franchise with Chris Pine taking over the reigns of Tom Clancy’s desk jockey turned unlikely international incident solver.